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John Nichols

National Affairs Correspondent

John Nichols, a pioneering political blogger, writes about politics for The Nation as its national-affairs correspondent. His pieces have been circulated internationally, quoted in numerous books, and mentioned in debates on the floor of Congress.

Nichols is a contributing writer for The Progressive and In These Times and the associate editor of the Capital Times, the daily newspaper in Madison, Wisconsin. His articles have appeared in The New York Times, Chicago Tribune, and dozens of other newspapers.

Nichols is a frequent guest on radio and television programs as a commentator on politics and media issues. He was featured in Robert Greenwald’s documentary Outfoxed, and in Joan Sekler’s Unprecedented, Matt Kohn’s Call It Democracy, and Robert Pappas’s Orwell Rolls in His Grave. The keynote speaker at the 2004 Congress of the International Federation of Journalists in Athens, Nichols has been a featured presenter at conventions, conferences, and public forums on media issues sponsored by the Federal Communications Commission, the Congressional Progressive Caucus, Consumers International, the Future of Music Coalition, the AFL-CIO, the Rainbow/PUSH Coalition, the Newspaper Guild [CWA], and dozens of other organizations.

Nichols is the author of The Fight for the Soul of the Democratic Party: The Enduring Legacy of Henry Wallace’s Anti-Fascist, Anti-Racist Politics (Verso), Horsemen of the Trumpocalypse: A Field Guide to the Most Dangerous People in America (Nation Books) as well as The Genius of Impeachment (New Press); a critically acclaimed analysis of the Florida recount fight of 2000, Jews for Buchanan (New Press); and a best-selling biography of former vice president Dick Cheney, Dick: The Man Who is President (New Press), which was also published in French and Arabic. He edited Against the Beast: A Documentary History of American Opposition to Empire (Nation Books), of which historian Howard Zinn said: “At exactly the time when we need it most, John Nichols gives us a special gift—a collection of writings, speeches, poems, and songs from throughout American history—that reminds us that our revulsion to war and empire has a long and noble tradition in this country.”

With Robert W. McChesney, Nichols has co-authored the books It’s the Media, Stupid! (Seven Stories), Our Media, Not Theirs (Seven Stories), Tragedy and Farce: How the American Media Sell Wars, Spin Elections, and Destroy Democracy (The New Press), The Death and Life of American Journalism (Nation Books), Uprising: How Wisconsin Renewed the Politics of Protest, from Madison to Wall Street (Nation Books), and their latest, People Get Ready: The Fight Against a Jobless Economy and a Citizenless Democracy (Nation Books, March 2016). McChesney and Nichols are the co-founders of Free Press, a media-reform network, which organized the 2003 and 2005 National Conferences on Media Reform.

Of Nichols, author Gore Vidal says: “Of all the giant slayers now afoot in the great American desert, John Nichols’s sword is the sharpest.” (Photo by Robin Holland / Bill Moyers Journal)



  • CongressOctober 3, 2002

    After Torricelli

    Democrats in Washington and New Jersey sighed with relief when scandal-plagued Senator Robert Torricelli ended a doomed run for a second term.

    John Nichols


  • Political FiguresSeptember 25, 2002

    Wellstone and the War

    Even as Minnesota Senator Paul Wellstone announced his opposition to George W.

    John Nichols

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  • September 23, 2002

    Schröder Beats Bush

    The first 2002 election campaign in which George W. Bush's desire to attack Iraq became a major issue did not involve Republicans and Democrats. It was not even held in the United States. But it can still be said that Bush – and his proposed war--came out on the losing end of the contest.

    German voters on Sunday gave a narrow, yet clear, mandate to the red-green coalition of Chancellor Gerhard Schröder. The dramatic come-from-behind win for Schröder's Social Democratic Party (SPD) and its coalition partner, the Green Party, followed a campaign in which the chancellor promised to withhold German support for a US-led war against Iraq.

    "Under my leadership, Germany will not participate in military action," declared Schröder, in a blunt statement that distinguished the chancellor from Edmund Stoiber, the standard bearer of the conservative Christian Democratic Union-Christian Social Union (CDU-CSU) alliance that sought to oust the four-year-old SPD-Green government.

    John Nichols

  • Campaigns and ElectionsSeptember 19, 2002

    Women Move Up

    Shannon O'Brien had advantages going into the campaign for the Democratic gubernatorial nomination in Massachusetts. As the state treasurer, she'd won a statewide race.

    John Nichols

  • September 17, 2002

    US Rep. Rahall Speaks in Iraq

    US Rep. Nick Rahall's policy pronouncements tend toward announcements about extending water and sewer service in southern West Virginia, or the erection of safety barriers on dangerous stretches of Interstate 64. So much of official Washington was caught by surprise when the West Virginia Democrat appeared before the Iraqi Assembly Sunday "as a member of Congress concerned with peace" and declared, "Basically, I want America and Iraq to give peace a chance."

    "Instead of assuming that war must come, let us find ways to discover how to prove that war is unnecessary," Rahall told the Iraqis. "It is time and, in my opinion, far past time that American andIraqi officials talk to each other without threats."

    Rahall's trip to Baghdad, which followed President Bush's saber-rattling address to the United Nations General Assembly, drew international attention to a congressman who has spent most of his quarter century on Capitol Hill securing funding for road projects and mine safety initiatives. Unlike Bush, however, Rahall is no newcomer to Middle East affairs.

    John Nichols




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